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PX3A1-35 Astrophysics Project

Undergraduate Level 3
Module leader
Steven Boyd
Credit value
Module duration
22 weeks
100% coursework
Study location
University of Warwick main campus, Coventry
Introductory description

The project gives students the opportunity to develop their own ideas in a particular field of astrophysics. Usually students work in pairs, within one of our research groups and alongside postgraduate students and other members of staff. The experience of working more independently should be valuable to students' future careers, whether they intend to work as scientists or not, and can help students make their career choices.

Module web page

Module aims

To provide an experience of working on an extended 'research-like' project in collaboration with a supervisor and, typically, with a partner

Outline syllabus

This is an indicative module outline only to give an indication of the sort of topics that may be covered. Actual sessions held may differ.

You will work, normally in pairs, on an extended project which may be observational, computational or theoretical (or indeed a combination of these). Through discussions with your supervisor and partner you will establish a plan of work which you will frequently review as you progress. In general, the project will not be closely prescribed and will contain an investigative element. Over the Christmas vacation you will independently write an interim report which will be marked and returned (with feedback) by your supervisor. At the end of the second term, you will again independently write a final report, which will be assessed by two independent members of academic staff, who will also examine you in a viva voce examination.

Learning outcomes

By the end of the module, students should be able to:

  • To study an area of astrophysics in detail
  • Communicate and analyse the results of a study
  • Write a scientific report and defend it at a viva voce examination
  • To undertake research in astrophysics
Indicative reading list

Research journals and books

Research element

Research project

Subject specific skills

Research skills in physics

Transferable skills

Analytical, communication, IT, organisational, problem-solving, self-study

Study time

Type Required
Lectures 2 sessions of 1 hour (1%)
Project supervision 43 sessions of 1 hour (12%)
Private study 305 hours (87%)
Total 350 hours
Private study description

Analysis of techniques and results, discussing with partner, reading and working through research papers, writing reports, preparing for oral defence in the viva, taking/generating data


No further costs have been identified for this module.

You do not need to pass all assessment components to pass the module.

Assessment group A
Weighting Study time
Dissertation & Report 100%
Feedback on assessment

Written feedback provided by supervisor (end of term 1), written and verbal feedback written from the two independent assessors of the dissertation.


This module is Core for:

  • UPXA-F3F5 Undergraduate Physics with Astrophysics (BSc)
    • Year 3 of F3F5 Physics with Astrophysics
    • Year 3 of F3F5 Physics with Astrophysics